Chapter 2:

Chapter 2 The Old ruined village

Journey through the apocalypse

Walking through the usual grassy grounds and onto the whole forest of greenery and overgrown trees, plants are growing, and others are withering through all that.

They keep on walking atop a hill, helping each other walk over the big rocks found in the forest, and finally, after a while, they arrive atop the hill and oversee the vast array of the entire forest, a view that only comes once in a million years. Perhaps Elisabeth is too speechless to say anything, and Jack starts up a conversation.

‘’ I told you I’d found something for you; it's nice, isn’t it? I was speechless too, witnessing this.’’

Elisabeth smiles upon hearing this and looks at him with her blonde, innocent, and pure eyes.

‘’ Yeah, you're right, Jack, this really is beautiful. We’ve been together for almost 5 months, and we’ve never come across something this beautiful. I just don’t have the words for it. Seriously, this is something else. I love it.’’

Jack, happy to hear it, instantly hugs Elisabeth. closing her eyes, she too embraces him.

‘’ Eli, I really love you. I know I’ve said this a million times, but I really love you. I want to be with you forever, whether it means crossing over hundreds of forests.

I really do. Elisabeth stops Jack from talking by putting her hands on his mouth, tears running down her face. ‘’ Jack, you’ve done so much for me. I’m just so... I am glad to have met you. I also want to be with you. Hey Jack, even assuming we'll die tomorrow,

Will you still spend time with me or accept your fate? Will you keep loving me? Even if hundreds of years pass by, even if they

were reincarnated, I don’t want these to happen. I want to love you from now on, the present you that I fell deeply in love with’’ her hands from his mouth to his cheek.

So, let’s keep on being us and loving each other as lovers, and maybe if we can then maybe just maybe we can.

She brings her face closer to his getting married and having kids or something like that’’ speechless Jack says nothing and merely looks at her with admiration and love. His pure blue eyes merely reflect his beloved lover as she yet again declares her love and proposes a marriage. He tries to get some words out but can't tear his eyes, and after a bit he finally finds his words.

‘’ Eli, I can't promise you a happy future. I don’t know if I can really make you happy, so I want to spend every moment with you. Seeing you smile with joy is my reason for living, my only reason’’ Hearing this, Elisabeth moves her hands to his reddish hair, gently stroking like a mother comforting their child with a pure and innocent angelic smile on her face.

‘’ Jack I can’t imagine being with anyone even if you can’t promise me a happy future I still would look back and think to myself oh I’m glad I met you I’m glad I got to live out my remaining days with the person I loved the most in my life, I’ve never been more grateful I got to meet you in my life like ever, Jack I don’t want to be apart from you forever always together’’

She brings his head closer to her chest gently stroking his hair, tears running down his face; they both comfort each other through the embrace and their warmth. Elisabeth closes her pure blonde eyes Jack fully embraces her and suddenly Elisabeth heavily breathes Jack notices and quickly moves his hand to her forehead and it's burning ‘’ Hey Elisabeth? You, okay? Hey Elisabeth?

OH, you're burning. I must take you somewhere safe but where? Nowhere seems safe no first off, I must bring you down the hill quickly’’. panicking and worried he carries Elisabeth on his back and makes for a run towards their little camp to find first aid and help her whispering behind him is the wimping and weak and vulnerable Elisabeth ‘’

Hey Jack, it's hot and suddenly I feel weak’’.

Running even faster down the hill and towards the left and right, he finally finds it. He slowly and gently lays her down in an area full of shade to avoid the buzzing sun and the heat from it. Despite the forest being beautiful, it is still quite hot. ‘’ Damn it, damn it, damn it.

I should’ve noticed she was walking much slower than usual. Why didn’t I pick on it sooner? I said all that, yet I couldn’t notice something like this goddamn it’’ cursing himself for being weak, he also feels weak and hot, yet again he curses himself, moves your damn legs. You gotta move these damn legs. Both Jack and Elisabeth pass out and sleep due to the hot temperature of the sun.

3 days later

‘’ Sinking down into the bottom, I feel like I’m sinking down. I can’t swim my way up. I’m so weak, so damn weak. Goddamn it, if only I was more attentive and rested frequently, I wouldn’t have to burden Eli so much. I should have tried harder’’.

Jack wakes up from his dream and he sees an unfamiliar wooden ceiling in front of him struggling to move his body. He looks around in confusion and notices that the room is completely devoid of anything aside from a white sheet that he’s currently resting on, making it seem like a dream since they’ve mostly been sleeping on ruined buildings or forests.

This feels so nice’’ Closing his eyes, he rests, which, after a while, was interrupted by the sound of a door sliding open.

A bald old man appears.

‘’ Hey lad, looking mighty fine, aintcha? You sure almost died there. What’s with the blazing hot sun and you and your lover? You just can't escape the blazing heat, lad. Might as well hide in a cold sea.’’

the old man rambles on while Jack watches in utter confusion and tries to bring the words out.

. ‘’ Well, lad, don’t worry, you're safe for now. Your fevers mostly come down. Just rest for a bit and you’ll be back to full health. Your girlfriends are doing well too.

However, I’ve run out of ingredients for the medicine. It would be nice if you could secure certain flowers for me. That's what I want to say, but you're still weak and tired. Best you rest lest you destroy your body’’.

Hearing this Jack tries to move, to save and see his lover wake up, to continue their journey, and to see her smile however it proved useless he still hasn’t completely recovered from his fever his body is still weak as ever frustrated by that he curses himself in silence the bald old man reassures him.

‘’ don’t worry too much lad it happens to anyone we all get sick one way or another it happens to all of us we can’t escape it,

 no matter how powerful or experienced you are at the end you still get sick, sick of yourself, of your weakness, 

sick of this unfair world, sick of everything else however its ok to be sick sometimes cause it's through being sick we realize how small we really are, how weak we are and thus we strive to be better ourselves, it's through our weakness that we end up accepting and loving yourself, and from then on that’s when your life truly starts there may be many ups and down yet at the end you yourself remain moving forward.

Jack, unable to move, listens to the old man’s rambling and says that he himself sought nothing more than his beloved's life to be joyous and happy. 

He himself never truly considered his own life to be just like hers; at his core, he truly was sick. He silently thinks and falls asleep in his own warm sheet. 

He reminisces about the past. A woman with long black hair and a boy with reddish hair and pure blue eyes stood in front of each other. ‘’ Hey Jack, I'm glad to have met you. It may be our last time being together, but I won’t ever forget that fact.

Thank you for loving me, Jack. Instantly waking up from his dream and being able to move freely, he surveys his environment; it has remained the same since he first woke up:

a sliding door to his left and wood surrounding everything, including the ground and soft sofa, where he deeply slept in peace. He slowly gets up and moves towards the sliding door,

which opens without ease and makes his way to a laid-out straight line made of wood. Jack walks a few steps and overhears a conversation between the bald old man and Elisabeth.

Curious, he moves closer to eavesdropping. However, the sliding door opens, and what appeared before him was none other than Elisabeth wearing a kimono that stretches all the way to her legs, leaving no skin to be noticed with her blonde hair tied to one end, making it shorter.

 Her pure and innocent blonde eyes are looking at him with embarrassment. her face was completely red. Jack, entranced by her and speechless to say anything, blushes completely red on his face. He tries to speak, but unfortunately no words could come out. Elisabeth speaks first with embarrassment.

‘’ Hey Jack, how do I look? Hopefully I look beautiful. This is the first time I've worn this type of clothing, and it certainly fits well with me. 

Though it's a bit hard to move, I must be careful, or I’ll trip and get hurt moments after recovering from the high fever I had. 

Jack, still shocked by her beauty, inhales and exhales to calm himself down. Finally, after a bit, he calms down and looks at Elisabeth with his pure and innocent blue eyes and with a soft tone.

‘’ Hey Eli, you look beautiful; way too beautiful for someone like me; the clothing fits you well’’ Yet again, Elisabeth is blushing red from Jack’s reply to her, and with her pure and blonde eyes, she replies, thank you, Jack,

 I really appreciate it. Seriously, you always know the right words to say at the right time, don’t you’’ Elisabeth says so while still blushing.

Jack makes a soft chuckle.

‘’ Haha, of course I only say the truth with you, though you certainly surprised me with this clothing. Did that old man give it to you perhaps?’’

Jack wondered when the old man gave her clothes and healed her from her high fever, but soon after he threw those thoughts away and walked with Elisabeth to a room with an open sliding door in the front, inviting the calm and cold wind in to ensure no one got sick again.

A full moon was shining brightly, and despite it being night, it didn’t seem like it. Both Jack and Elisabeth moved outside, with Jack leading her so she didn’t trip and hurt herself, and with the moon shining down on them like they’re the spotlights on a theater. 

Jack looks at her with his pure and innocent blue eyes, and Elisabeth looks at him with her pure and innocent blonde eyes.

. ‘’ Hey Eli, I’m sorry. I tried to really save you, but I couldn’t do a damn thing. I just made things worse for you. Maybe if I had noticed a little earlier, maybe I wouldn’t have hurt you or scared you. I could have done better, but I didn't. I’m sorry I did, Eli’’.

expressing his deep regret with a frown, Elisabeth looks at him with surprise, her eyes widening, and she speaks with a soft voice.

‘’ Hey Jack, what happened was unavoidable. We couldn’t have expected it either way since we’re always adventuring through the ruined buildings. There wasn’t much that could have been done. We’re not perfect; we will always be weak and imperfect. However, it's due to knowing this very fact that we can take a step forward.’’

the wind making her clothing flutter. Jack was yet again entranced by her beauty and the words that struck deep within him. He suddenly recalls what the old man said prior to him sleeping: ‘’ It's through knowing our weaknesses that we can move forward.’’

Jack’s eyes widened. 

‘’ Ah, I see. That’s what he meant. I’ve only been thinking of you. I never bothered to look at myself. I used you as an excuse to push myself harder. I’m sick, huh?’’ confessing to Elisabeth. Jack looks down at himself. Elisabeth tries to reassure him.

‘’ Jack, I’m eternally grateful that you look at me this way; however, if you don’t think of yourself or love yourself at the end, what’s the point of this relationship?

I don’t want this to be one-sided. I want you to think of yourself more, accept yourself more, and free yourself from anything that chains you down.

 I don’t want the princess treatment. I want you to look at me like any normal girl. I want to protect you in my own way, comfort you, and smile with you forever together, no matter what happens to us. 

Can you promise me that?’’

With an angelic smile, her words hit Jack deeply. Speechless to say anything, he thinks for a while and finally comes up with an answer.

‘’ Hey Eli, if you can really promise to be by my side, then maybe even I can overcome my fear and think of myself more and love myself. I’ve never truly looked at myself at all, but maybe with you I can do that’’ he smiles with tears on his face.

Elisabeth, with determination in her eyes, speaks with affection: ‘’ Hey Jack, the moon is full tonight; it's the perfect night for a promise to be made.

Can you promise me under this full moon night that you’ll love yourself more and always be by my side no matter what danger befalls us? Can you truly do that?''

hearing all this, and without hesitation, he rushes to Elisabeth and gives her a tight hug, a warm and affectionate hug that almost makes Elisabeth fall to tears. Jack whispers to her. ‘’ Eli no Elisabeth, I, from here on, promise to stay by your side.

I won’t push myself for your sake, but rather for our sake forever until death does us part’’ Shocked Elisabeth's chest tightens, she finally lets out her tears and hugs him back tightly. She looks up at him with her blonde and pure eyes, looking straight at him.

‘’ That’s the first time you called me by my first name, Jack. I love you so much. '’

’. smiling whilst in tears, Jack does the same.

 ‘’ Me to Elisabeth, I love you too, and I’ll always call your name no matter how many times’’ and with this, his lips slowly move closer to hers, surprising Elisabeth. She quickly notices her lips and Jack clearly touching each other. 

They both kiss each other, and Elisabeth closes her eyes.

Both Elisabeth and Jack kiss under the full moonlight and make a promise—an unforgettable and unbroken promise that will span on for all eternity. A moment, though brief, touched the two’s hearts deeply, something that they’ll never forget for the time to come until one day death itself does them part.

(End of Chapter)